Bombardier CL-600-2B19, Rapid City, S.D., Jan. 17, 2004–The NTSB determined that the left wingtip of the Skywest CRJ hit the runway because of the copilot’s failure to maintain control and the captain’s delay in initiating remedial action. Factors contributing to the accident were the low ceiling and low visibility due to fog, and the aircraft’s deviation from expected performance because of airframe icing.
United Airlines wasted no time implementing contingency plans to replace services provided by soon-to-be estranged partner Atlantic Coast Airlines after a district court injunction prompted Mesa Air Group to drop its takeover bid for the Sterling, Va.-based regional. Last month the bankrupt major airline recruited St.
SkyWest COO Brad Rich said last month that Delta Air Lines has “expressed its desire specifically to us” to sell one or both of its regional subsidiaries–Atlantic Southeast Airlines and Comair–to the St. George, Utah-based regional carrier. “I think it’s more than just an interest,” said Rich. “They need to generate some capital somewhere, and this is one way to do it.”
Notwithstanding recent complaints of poor operational performance by the nation’s biggest regional airlines, passenger boardings, revenue passenger miles (RPMs), load factors and average trip distance all broke records during last year’s third quarter, according to statistics compiled by Washington, D.C.-based The Velocity Group for the Regional Airline Association.
A new code-share contract signed last month by St. George, Utah-based SkyWest to fly from Milwaukee and Kansas City as Midwest Connect stands as the centerpiece of Midwest Airlines’ strategy to fend off a hostile buyout overture from AirTran Airways. The deal, scheduled to take effect in April, calls for SkyWest to fly 25 Bombardier CRJ200s, the first 15 arriving by this November.
Atlantic Southeast Airlines (ASA) pilots on December 15 picketed the company’s newest flight crew base, at Los Angeles International Airport, to protest the lack of progress in their contract talks with management.
The FAA is trying to interview the pilot of a non-U.S. registered Gulfstream V involved in a Class A runway incursion at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) on September 30. During the incident, a departing SkyWest Airlines CRJ700 stopped within about 100 feet of the Gulfstream, which was on the same runway. The Gulfstream then continued on its planned flight to Long Beach, according to an FAA spokesman.
The FAA has interviewed the pilots of a Gulfstream V that caused a runway incursion on September 30 at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), during which a SkyWest Airlines CRJ700 braked to a stop reportedly within 100 feet of the GV. The CRJ didn’t suffer any damage, according to a SkyWest spokeswoman, but did have to cool its brakes for 15 minutes, delaying the flight by about half an hour.
The crash of Comair Flight 5191 in the early morning darkness of August 27 has given pause to the entire aviation community. As investigators grapple with the question of how an experienced CRJ100 crew could blast down an unlit, 3,500-foot runway without looking at so much as their heading, safety experts are becoming convinced that technology might have broken the chain of events that led to the crash.
The union representing the pilots of SkyWest Airlines regional airline subsidiary Atlantic Southeast Airlines on October 13 began picketing the long-time union-free parent company at its St. George, Utah headquarters. At press time, the sides remained far apart on demands for what the union calls a “moderate” wage increase and work rule improvements.